Chiefs LB Willie Gay Handed Four-Game Ban

The Chiefs will be without one of their young linebacker starters for an extended stretch. Willie Gay received a four-game suspension Monday, Field Yates of tweets.

This ban is for a personal conduct policy violation, Tom Pelissero of tweets. In January, Gay was arrested on a misdemeanor criminal damage charge in connection with an incident in which he was visiting his son’s house and, amid an argument with the child’s mother, damaged property in her home. Gay, 24, agreed to a pretrial diversion program in June.

Gay, who played 92% of the Chiefs’ defensive snaps in their win over the Chargers, has been a full-time starter for most of his career. This will mark another absence for the former second-round pick, however. Gay missed five games due to injury in 2021.

Gay and 2021 second-rounder Nick Bolton reside as the Chiefs’ top linebackers. The latter is Kansas City’s centerpiece player at the position, but Gay has made 21 career starts. He has 16 tackles (two for loss) and two passes defensed through two games this season. He will miss games against the Colts, Buccaneers, Raiders and Bills.

Pro Football Focus rated Gay as a top-25 linebacker last season, one that featured two interceptions. A significant usage gap exists between Bolton and Gay and the rest of Kansas City’s linebackers, though the team did use a third-round pick on rookie Leo Chenal. The Chiefs have used Chenal on 32 defensive plays this season. Darius Harris, a former UDFA who has bounced on and off the Chiefs’ practice squad during his career, has logged 18 defensive snaps thus far this year.

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